Around the World in 80 Girls: The Epic 3 Year Trip of a Backpacking Casanova (8 page)

BOOK: Around the World in 80 Girls: The Epic 3 Year Trip of a Backpacking Casanova
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Russia
is an expensive country with low salaries; Julia worked in accounting and couldn’t afford her own place. She shared her apartment and even the bed with the other girl. To my cheeky question about whether they spooned at night she just laughed. She asked me if I was a “pick upper”. Of course I denied it and played dumb. I wasn’t even lying, really: at that point I had actually never heard of pick-up artists.

After
saying goodbye in the morning I walked around the city center with Darya and visited a boring museum. She told me that Natalya’s friend Lisa was eager to see me again. I said to Darya that I was already with another girl and she was surprised. She asked me if I’d a Russian girlfriend before and I told her about the two Julias in Moscow and Kazan, and mentioned the girl in Kazakhstan. She immediately called Lisa and the two talked wildly about it, I couldn’t understand much of the quick Russian conversation but enough to hear that they were excited about me. This was the moment of revelation that I found out that being with lots of girls is a major attraction spike for most girls and not a turn-off the way it was programmed in my beta mind. In pick-up terms this is called pre-selection and it would be become one of my strongest beliefs.

That day I also bought new jeans at a Chinese market, since my old pair was nearly falling apart and was all ripped up at the crotch and knees. Who says you need to dress nice to pick up a hot girl? In the evening I saw Julia again and we had coffee and some chicken at the local cafeteria before going back to her house. That night I had mind-blowing sex with her. It was the best I had ever had up to that point. She was very flexible, had a killer bikini model body and the craziness of a porn star. She looked very similar to the girl on the cover of this book, who is also a Russian model. She kept saying it must have been a magical event for us to meet in the train and being together now. She was head ov
er heels in love with me (and still is).

Russia (Far East) – Trouble at Vladivostok Airport

When I was in Khabarovsk I had to plan my way out of Russia. My initial idea was to take a boat to Japan, but I changed my mind because the last boat left three days before my visa expired, and I didn’t want to leave my beloved Russia before I had to. Other than the boat, the only option was taking a plane, so I started checking out websites. The only “cheap” flight I could find was one with Air Vladivostok to Niigata in Japan. I put “cheap” in quotation marks because it still came to about five hundred dollars for a one-hour flight. Of course, looking for a flight only five days before your visa expires is really not the most recommended way of travelling, but I really do travel on the fly – I never know how long I’ll stay somewhere or when I’ll move on to the next destination. In this case, there was only one problem: the flight I found was the day after my Russian visa expired. There I was, overstaying my visa again; the first time I’d done that was in Kazakhstan. But I didn’t worry, figuring that if I had managed to talk my way out of
that
situation, I could do it again in Russia. I presumed they wouldn’t wave AK-47s around at me at an airport. What can I say, sometimes you have to take risks.

On departure day, I woke up next to Julia, who was already awake and looking at me. Her perfect naked body looked amazing in the morning sunshine that was coming in through the window. We talked about saying goodbye and she asked if we could keep in touch by email. I was ok with that but didn’t give it much chance of actually happening; usually you keep in touch for a while and then things eventually die out. It’s the natural order of things, I guess.  Still, we exchanged Facebook names and email addresses anyway.

After saying goodbye to Julia I had to rush to get to Vladivostok airport on time. I took a bus and arrived only one hour before the flight. Because I already knew I was going to be in trouble, I cut in front of the line and showed my passport to the custom official. Her eyes widened when she saw my visa date. She called for her superior and a uniformed guy walked in.

He was unfriendly from the start.  After one look at my visa he told me I was in Russia illegally and that he was putting me in the airport prison until further notice, talking about sending me back to Moscow for an emergency visa. So far, this was pretty much the same situation as back in Kazakhstan – except for the machine-gun pressing into my back and pushing me forward. With time ticking away I asked him if he could make an exception because I paid five hundred dollars for the ticket and had mixed up the dates when booking, but he didn’t want to hear any of that. He kept saying that I was going to the prison, and that he would contact the embassy. He was determined that I wouldn’t make the flight, and I was getting really worried. Had I gone too far this time? Was I going to be some big guy’s girlfriend in prison?

But apparently there’s someone up there whose job is to look out for lucky bastards like me: another custom official walked in and she was hot!! I guess she was somewhere in her late twenties. She had long blonde hair with red extensions woven into it. Her uniform couldn’t hide her nice-looking breasts. I looked at her shoulders and saw the same stripes as the guy who was giving me a hard time. I thought to myself:
You are exactly the one I need right now
.

I started explaining my situation to her and she spoke very good English. For the next half-hour I completely ignored the tough guy and just praised Russia to her. I told her how much I loved the country and how nice everyone was to me, I talked about my experiences with the people I met along the way, the wedding I was invited to and the big bouquet of flowers I bought for the bride. When I said that, she put her hand on my shoulder and gave me a massive smile. Mixing up English and Russian words, I told her that I’d fallen in love with a Russian girl and that I wanted to live in Russia after I finished my trip.

Well, I wasn’t lying – not a single word of it. I had plans to live in Khabarovsk and work as an English teacher or something. I was truly in love with Russia. The whole story impressed her a lot – I had totally won her over. She even playfully touched me a few times while I was telling my story. I was charming her all the way. The hard-ass customs guy walked off and the hot one told me she could make an exception if I was willing to pay a fine and pay for a one-day emergency visa. Of course I said yes to this. We were pressed for time at this point – there were only a few minutes till the plane took off and she had a big pile of papers I had to sign. I signed at least twelve documents while she filled in all the forms for me because they were all in the Cyrillic Russian alphabet. To this day I have no idea what I agreed to in those forms but at that moment I didn’t care. Now I kind of worry I might have promised my first-born son to Russia or something.

The fine was a whopping nine Euros. I had to hold back my laugh when she told me that.

I had only a few minutes left, and other officials were searching through my backpack. When they finished she told me to hurry to the airplane, which was waiting on the airstrip. In one last bold move I asked if I could take a picture with her. She looked around at her colleagues, especially the guy who had given me a lot of problems, than she looked at me, gave me a big smile and said: “Don’t push your luck, get on that airplane!”

From the way she looked at me, I was pretty sure she wanted to take that picture with me, but didn’t want to embarrass herself in front of her strict colleagues. With a quick “Bye and thanks!” I ran to the plane with my backpack on my back. As soon as I got one foot in the plane, they closed the door behind me and I had to leave my backpack the flight attendants’ area. I was so happy that I didn’t miss that flight.  But I made it, all thanks to one hot Russian Customs agent.  I’m pretty sure she had a lot of fun telling the story of the charming, stupid illegal tourist over the next few weeks.

Actually, I had one more trump card up my sleeve when the whole customs drama went down, if nothing else had worked out. Vitaly, the sketchy businessman I’d met in Khabarovsk and Vladivostok had told me to give him a phone call if I ever got in trouble. He runs a visa agency and had already promised me a free Russian visa for one or two years if I decided to live in his city. He had said he’d solve any problems with Customs if needed.  He also said that once I finished my trip round the world, if I did come back to Khabarovsk he would get me on Russian local television (local, but still a million viewers), because he was impressed with my story and knew people at the network. I think Vitaly had enough connections to actually talk me out of trouble. It didn’t matter anymore. I was on my way to a whole new world. A world unknown to me but that I was dying to find out about. Asia had always fascinated me, and when exploring, what better country to start with than Japan, the craziest country of them all.

 

 

 

Chapter
Two – Northern Asia

Japan – Niigata

The flight from Vladivostok in Russia to Niigata in Japan took only a little over an hour. I felt great setting foot in Asia, a whole new world waiting to be explored. At arrival the customs checked my temperature in case I had the bird flu, which was the big worry at the time. They took my picture, my fingerprints and went through my backpack. I couldn’t find a working ATM and couldn’t change my Russian rubles, which made for a great start for a new country. Luckily I had twenty dollars left in a hidden place in my bag and was able to exchange that and buy a bus ticket to the city center. There was a guesthouse in town and I wrote down the address. When I asked for directions, the girls at the tourist office told me I’d have to take three separate buses and walk for twenty minutes.

I
thought to myself that I’d go straight to Tokyo and went to the train station. The prices were horrendous, so I looked for the bus station instead. I found it, but there were no more tickets for the night bus so I bought a ticket for the first bus in the morning at 06.00. That evening I walked around Niigata a bit. Since I had my backpack I couldn’t go to bars or anything, and frankly I didn’t feel like it much. Niigata was impressive: it was my first contact with Japanese culture and of course I finally saw the teenage girls in their little school uniforms. Everything you might think about it is true: they do look sexy in those short skirts and big white socks.

The
next amazing thing I saw were the toilets at the local McDonalds. I went in there for a burger and I needed to take a dump. I went into the toilets and saw that the toilet had a lot of buttons on it. The first button I tried turned out to be for the automatic toilet seat, which would go up or down without you needing to touch it. I sat down and did my thing. I took my time because I wanted to try all the buttons. One was turning on music and another turned on the bidet. A beam of water hit my bum; another beam of water hit me in the nuts. Apparently that one was for the ladies. A little blow-drying later I was all done and ready for action.

That
evening I tried to stay at the local train station to pass the time and get some sleep but the guards kicked me out around midnight. I walked the streets a bit and decided to get some sleep in the park. There were a few homeless people around sleeping on the park benches, and I found an empty one and lay down. The bums looked weirdly at me but left me alone. A few hours later I went back to the bus station because I couldn’t catch any sleep. I found a bench to sleep on there, set my alarm and when I woke up there were already a bunch of people around me waiting for the same bus. Some were staring and pointing at me, and one even took a picture. They’d probably never seen a white guy sleeping on a bench before.

I
jumped on the bus and went to see one of the biggest cities in the world: Tokyo.

Japan – Tokyo

Arriving in Tokyo created the usual effect: total disorientation, exhaustion, and not having a clue where I was. I had swapped the Russian Lonely Planet for the Japanese one in the hostel in Vladivostok, so at least I had a map of the city, but the Japanese alphabet is even crazier than the Russian one. After finding out where the hell I was, I was able to find my way to a hostel. Not that it was easy: luckily I got some help in the metro from a friendly woman, but once I was outside I walked for about an hour and a half to find the hostel. I walked in dripping with sweat; the humidity was killing in Tokyo. The hostel was very luxurious, but I wasn’t expecting anything less for about twenty-eight dollars a night.

After
a few days on my own I’d gathered a small group to hang out with. There were two Danish girls, an American girl, another Dutch guy and a Scottish guy who looked like a mix between a leprechaun and a Hobbit. We visited a museum together and went to a nearby bar called the Samurai Café a couple of times. Going to clubs was out of the question. Taxis were unaffordable and so were the prices in the clubs. Too bad, because it meant I didn’t get any contact with local chicks. The two Danish girls (Julie and Lisa) were just average-looking but one of them had the biggest tits ever. One night we all got drunk at the Samurai bar and at one point we were talking about doing a motorboat on them.

The
Danish girl didn’t think I’d do it but I grabbed those enormous knockers, stuck my head between them and motorboated her for half a minute. I couldn’t get enough of it. Meanwhile the Scottish guy was on my tail, he wanted her too. He was butt-ugly but also quite funny. The race was on.

After
a while we all went back to the hostel which was close to the bar. I talked with the Danish girl when we walked over and all of us stayed around in the hostel a bit more. The two girls went to bed and stayed behind with the Dutch guy. A few minutes later I went to my bed in the dorm and got my toothbrush. When I walked into the bathroom I saw clothes lying on the floor and heard the big-boobed girl and the Scottish Gnome talk and laugh in one of the shower cubicles. I felt really pissed off and learned a lesson that day: it isn’t over till the fat (Danish) lady sings. I don't remember if they were staying in the same dorm. Maybe they were and things got started that way, but most importantly I missed a lay and a flag that day.

The
next day she mentioned she had to explain things to him while having sex. The leprechaun couldn’t even bang her right! Thinking about this night now, I made so many beginner mistakes it isn’t even funny.

I
visited a lot of places the next day, including the famous crossroads you often see on television and a lot of temples. The problem with the temples is that when you’ve seen one you’ve seen them all. I bought an Acer laptop because of the high prices for Internet in Tokyo. You’d think the most digitalized country in the world would have cheap Internet rates but I had to pay four dollars an hour for it. At least Wi-Fi was free in the hostel. I really needed to start using Skype because my time in Russian and Kazakhstan cost me an 1100-dollar phone bill. I had called Julia from Kazan and my friends and family quite a few times on my Dutch mobile, and of course it was like making a long-distance call from Holland each time. Only I could be that stupid. Those phone calls cost me a month of travelling. I had never used Skype back home and didn’t bother to make an account before I left on my trip. I did however do lots of other planning and printing of information which I never used in the end. Talk about pennywise, pound foolish.

One
night I decided to stay in one of the famous capsule hotels. Capsules are one-by-one meter wide and two meter deep sleeping places. It’s a bit like sleeping in a coffin. The price was about the same as the hostel. It took a bit of getting used to living in Japan, especially coming from Russia. Everything was so clean. Japanese people are highly disciplined and don’t throw rubbish on the street, they put their trash in their pockets and throw it away at home. The only places with trashcans were the 7-11s in the street. Some of the stereotypes about Japanese people are true but I prefer not to mention them. You can figure it out for yourself if you ever visit. Still, despite all the cultural differences and the high prices I loved being in Japan and wouldn’t have missed it for the world.

At
first I missed Russia and all the people I met there, but I was slowly getting used to having left. I still emailed a lot with girls I met in Russia, especially Julia from Vladivostok.

Japan – Climbing Mount Fuji

One Friday night I climbed the famous Mount Fuji (or as the Japanese say, Fuji-san) with Dave and Sander, two Dutch guys I’d met in Tokyo. A bus took us to the base of the mountain and as usual we were totally unprepared. No warm clothes or rain gear and almost no food or water. This was the first time I used my hiking shoes and I was glad I found a reason to because I’d been carrying those heavy fuckers around for three months. Dave and Sander were just wearing sneakers. When we arrived at the base camp (Fifth station), there were loads of professionally-equipped Japanese people. I bought a flashlight at the base store because I’d forgotten mine. That sucked because now I had to spend twelve dollar on something I already had. Japanese prices were killing at that time.

We
started climbing at 8:15 PM and rushed up the mountain; we passed whole groups of tiny Japanese and took giant steps with our long Dutch legs. I had no problems keeping up with the two Dutch guys even though they were ten years younger than me and I had black lungs from smoking and had just spent two months on the vodka drip in Russia.

We
had to be careful in the dark; on some parts of the mountain you had to use your hands and your feet to climb, though at other parts there were steps cut out of the rocks.

After
a few hours it was pitch black and it started to get very cold, and we had to rest a bit more often. Around 1:00 AM we reached the top of Fuji-san – just before a rain storm. So, there we were; tired, cold and wet. There was almost no place to hide from the rain and unlike the Japanese, who clearly knew what they were getting into, we hadn’t brought any rain clothes. At the very top of the mountain there was a wooden shack where people could stay during the night at extremely high prices. The roof stuck out a bit and we stood under it with our backs to the wall to avoid the rain. We stood like that for hours. No need to say it was really cold up there. I was only wearing a shirt and a very thin jacket and was very hungry and thirsty. Funnily enough there were some vending machines along the way and at every level the price of a small bottle of water went up a hundred yens (a dollar).

After
a while the door to the wooden shack opened and we went in there to sit around the fire. We ate some horribly expensive noodles but we didn’t care about the price, we were starving and too cold. Around 5:30 the sun came up and we saw the most amazing sunrise ever. The view was absolutely stunning. The morning sunshine is called Go Rei Kou, which means “spiritual light”, and it’s easy to see why. I was really proud of myself. Mount Fuji is 3776 meters high and it was quite an accomplishment to have climbed in the dark, in less than five hours. It takes most Japanese climbers way over six hours to get to the top.

But w
e were already dead tired, and the worst part was still to come. It turns out that getting down Mount Fuji is a lot harder than getting up.  Mount Fuji is a volcanic mountain covered with sandy ash. You have to brace yourself with every step you take. After a few hours of descending your legs really hurt. But we made it without injuries, and after two hours of expensive bus and trains I was back at the hostel. I didn’t sleep all night and thought I’d be knackered the next day but I ended up being quite awake the rest of the day. Dave went straight from the mountain to some DJ-ing convention and night party that followed. He looked pretty rough when I saw him again. I checked out the next morning and just hung around the city till 11:00 at night, when I took the last metro to the train station. I stayed the most of the night at a McDonalds where they handed out free water to bums like me and took the train for Kyoto at five in the morning.

Japan – Kyoto

Arrival in Kyoto was a classic bum-trip. I left the train station and walked around for over an hour with my backpack on. The humidity was killing me. I had stayed in the McDonalds the whole night before and the last time I’d had a shower was the previous morning. Since I was late buying a ticket I had to change trains at small stations about five times. When I arrived in the hostel, I stank so much that people were running out of the dorm room. The first thing I did was taking a long shower and then spray on a lot of deodorant to show them all that I was actually a clean guy.

Within
a few hours I’d connected with a couple of people and after drinking some beers in the hostel we all went out to find a bar. The one we ended up at wasn’t a bad place – we even got to play some darts, my favorite pastime in Holland. We met a Japanese boy and girl and joined their table. The girl was drunk as fuck and kept repeating the same questions: “Wheee you fom? Wha you name? Why youuu here?” It was fun at first but it soon became really annoying. I sat down next to her and decided to see how far I could go with her. I remember one of us asking the Japanese teenager next to her if he was her boyfriend. She said “Noooooooooooooooooooo!!” very loudly and I almost felt sorry for the guy. He was clearly not amused. Meanwhile I gamed her a bit and was able to touch her a lot under the table. The Japanese guy never noticed a thing.

At
one point the group wanted to leave, so we all got up to go. The Japanese girl gave me a wink and that was that. I was pretty sure I could do a lot more but didn’t know how to isolate a girl and didn’t have a place to bring her anyway.

That
night I met a cute Japanese girl in the hostel named Sayuri. She had studied in the States and was more westernized and liberal than most Japanese girls; she also had a nice pair of knockers, especially for an Asian girl. Even so, she was damn hard to pick up. Girls were so conservative and I didn’t have the money to go to nightclubs to find the wilder ones. We went with a small group to a nearby park and drank our beers there. On the way we walked hand in hand but she backed out when I tried to kiss. I’m still in touch with her from time to time.

Japan – rest of the trip

For the next eight days I travelled with an Austrian guy named Mark. He was a tall 6.5ft bodybuilder but still complained he was small compared to his training buddies. He looked pretty massive to me. He was a compulsive tooth-brusher. Every morning he would brush his teeth for no less than twenty minutes.

BOOK: Around the World in 80 Girls: The Epic 3 Year Trip of a Backpacking Casanova
9.31Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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